Extent of secondary injury is the determinant of tissue destruction and functional worsening after primary spinal cord injury (SCI). Researches are affording to accumulate on alleviation of secondary injury in SCI. Besides its cholesterol lowering effects, statins are known to have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effects which are the main targets of spinal cord research. This study aims to evaluate the effects of atorvastatin on experimental SCI ischemia-reperfusion injury.Material and Methods:
Thirty adult male New Zealand rabbits were allocated into control, ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) and treatment groups. Treatment group received 5 mg/kg of atorvastatin via lavage for the preceding 14 days. Other groups are received placebo during the same time period. After two weeks, animals in the I/R and treatment groups underwent abdominal temporary aorta occlusion for 30 minutes. Neurological status of the animals was recorded during the 48 hours of observation. After that animals were sacrificed and levels of malondialdehyde, glutathione and nitric oxide in spinal cord tissue and plasma and the histopathological tissue changes were determined. Results:
Animals in the treatment groups demonstrated significantly better results than the I/R group regarding biochemical markers. Neurological evaluation using the Tarlov scale demonstrated significant better results at the 48th hour in treatment group. Histopathological results were also better in the treatment groups.Conclusion:
Results of this study representing the neuroprotective effects of atorvastatin. Atorvastatin has favorable effects on biochemical markers of oxidative stress in SCI. Further studies with larger cohorts and different time points area also needed.